Changing It Up: An Exclusive Preview of the Upcoming SBC CasinoBeats Conference

This Spring all roads lead to Malta for the SBC CasinoBeats Summit, being held May 23-25. 

Only in its fifth year, it’s already become a hub for iGaming’s most prominent leaders, techno masterminds and creative gurus.

Apart from the lure of the conference, the event is a perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in the latest game releases and learn about the latest game mechanics and technologies that will shape the future of our industry.

We at iGamingFuture have heard some tasty rumours about the exciting new changes coming to the conference this year. So to get the full scoop we caught up with Natalie Lees, Senior Conference Producer at SBC, to hear more about the big plans for this year’s content.

The theme for this year’s conference is the ‘Future of Casino and Game Creation’. Why is this so important to focus on? And how will it be reflected in the content?

The casino industry is a significant contributor to the global economy and therefore it’s essential to discuss its future. This topic demands more attention, particularly as the industry continues to evolve and adapt to new technologies and changing consumer preferences. 

“That’s why we’re thrilled to host the CasinoBeats Summit, providing a valuable platform for industry leaders to come together, exchange their ideas and insights about the industry’s future and learn how to stay ahead of the curve.

“New casino games are not only essential for growth in the industry but also for keeping players engaged and entertained. That’s why a continuous examination of the game creation process is crucial to ensure that games remain compelling for players. 

“Our conference takes a unique approach by focusing on the practical aspects of the industry, with two product-focused tracks featuring experts in product development, technology and design. From game mathematics, to player psychology and immersive experiences, attendees will gain valuable insights and best practices on how to create games that resonate with customers and drive growth in the industry.

“Apart from taking a deep dive into each element of slot games, we will explore other sectors that appeal to casino players and invite several casino affiliates to speak and provide valuable insights into the preferences and expectations of players. By doing this, we hope to gain a better understanding of what drives player engagement and loyalty, and how we can tailor our offerings accordingly, to create games that meet those needs and improve the overall player experience.”

This year attendees can look forward to a whole new way of learning. Please tell us about the new, interactive conference session formats that are being introduced. Why was it so important to make this change?

Indeed. This year’s conference is introducing a variety of new session formats designed to provide attendees with not just a more interactive, but also a more valuable and educational experience.

“One major change is the addition of a workshop room, which will allow for in-depth, hands-on learning on a variety of topics such as PPC strategies, understanding Gen Z, or optimising user-experience by improving the payment journey. 

“Workshops are an excellent way to dive deeper into specific topics and provide a more practical and immersive experience. We will offer limited spaces to ensure that our attendees have a focused and valuable learning experience without being drowned out by the noise of too many voices.

“Panel discussions will, of course, still be an important part of the conference, but we’re adding more interactive formats so that attendees can have the platform to ask questions – and get a better understanding of how the topics being discussed will affect their business. 

“The SEO Trilogy series, for instance, hosted by ComeOn Group SEO Director Ivana Flynn, is a great example of this new format. It’s part of the affiliation track on the second conference day and will allow audience members to send their questions anonymously to the on-stage panellists, covering technical SEO, new markets, and marketing strategy.

“The conference will also provide opportunities for problem-solving and networking through roundtable discussions with industry experts. This is a great way to connect with people who attendees may not have the opportunity to meet otherwise, and hold some more focused discussions where discourse is more driven by participants and less determined by a moderator. The roundtable discussions will focus on emerging markets, followed by panel in-depth discussions on established markets, focusing on jurisdictions such as Italy, The Netherlands, Malta, the US, Germany and Spain.”

Some industry commentators believe that the majority of conference content these days has become too generic and lacks real value. How can we, as content creators, avoid this and adopt a more product-focused approach going forward?

​​”It’s a great question. And one that I think is very relevant nowadays. From my perspective, it’s all about putting the audience and speakers at the heart of everything we do. To avoid a generic approach to conference content, we need to be proactive in seeking feedback and ideas from both groups to ensure that we’re meeting their needs and expectations.

“One way we can achieve this is by holding research calls ahead of the sessions to gather topic ideas and understand what the industry wants to learn about. By doing this, we can tailor our content to the specific needs and interests of the audience, which helps us to create a more engaging and meaningful experience for everyone involved.

“Moreover, we can always avoid being generic by focusing on real-life problems. For example, a product-focused approach, which you mentioned, will help us to achieve this exact goal at the CasinoBeats Summit 2023, and not just differentiate ourselves from other industry events offering conference content but also from our own events by focusing on more niche topics.

“The central stage of the event will feature two tracks: the Casino Slots Focus track on Wednesday, May 24 and the Casino Product Focus track on Thursday, May 25. These tracks will provide valuable insights based on years of experience and research, offering expert-led panels covering topics such as creating immersive player experiences, player psychology and game RTP complexities, incentivising players responsibly, new game releases and components, the future role of aggregators and crash games, among others.

“Our lineup of speakers is also quite unique, as we’ve focused our efforts on including industry creatives and tech-savvy profiles such as CTOs, product specialists, game developers and casino experts, who will help the audience solve their real-life problems by sharing cutting-edge ideas and innovations shaping the future of casino games.

“Ultimately, it’s about taking a strategic approach to content creation, putting the audience and speakers first and creating a conference experience that is both engaging and meaningful.”

At large exhibitions, it always seems to be the brands with the biggest budgets that get the most exposure and attendee engagement. Can you tell us about SBC’s plans to shine a brighter light on the up-and-coming companies at CasinoBeats Summit?

“That’s a fair assumption, and we are very well aware of some of the limitations that companies are facing due to budget restrictions. From our end, we’re trying to introduce more elements to make sure that SBC encourages new and up-and-coming brands to get involved in industry events more prominently.

“Apart from tailor-made exhibition and sponsorship packages that can meet the budget restrictions with more understanding, our focus on putting more spotlight on up-and-coming companies at CasinoBeats Summit includes launching the Game Studio Spotlight Award for game studios with less than 30 titles to showcase their products. The shortlisted studios will have a chance to showcase their products in front of the audience and pitch it to the judges. The audience and the judges will then both vote for the winner. This initiative is expected to showcase fantastic innovation from smaller studios, and aligns with other efforts of making this industry more inclusive.

“Additionally, the Game Lounge on the expo floor will provide an opportunity for some of the studios to launch and promote their latest innovations. Some of the streamers will also be playing the games live on the show floor, providing even more exposure to the up-and-coming studios.”

Want to Attend?

As SBC’s media partner, iGamingFuture is thrilled to offer free CasinoBeats Summit event passes to our Operator and Affiliate readers. To take advantage of this offer, simply contact the SBC Relationships team. Please include the code “IGAMINGFUTURECBS2023” in your email subject line, as well as your company name, website URL, name and surname in the email body.

Suppliers don’t miss your chance to attend the 2023 CasinoBeats Summit at a discounted price. You can purchase a Super Early Bird pass for only €295+VAT before the offer expires on February 24.

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